Poetry by Travis Hoyles

The Parking Lot

Cars with their side-mirrors marred
like the ears of practiced grapplers
oxidize on naked wheels.
Some have been propped-up with bricks
or smaller parts of other cars,
picked-clean by vultures
with a taste for metal.
Beer bottles broken upon the paving
diagram crude pentangles
where past participants
hoped to invoke in their rituals
some arcane sense of acceptance.
Condoms, discarded and grotesque,
lay in attitudes of strange austerity,
breaching the blades of struggling grass
like huge trematodes from a foreign planet.

There’s a hound that patrols the
northern section of meters,
sauntering in his loose skin,
as if he were a cat disguised.
When he barks you can feel the dross in your gut,
and he accepts no help.
I haven’t thought of a name that suits him–
was he named before all this?
Does he know it yet?
Or is it forgotten?
The names on so many collapsing headstones
in graveyards where relatives swore oaths
to visit regularly
come to mind.

Travis Hoyles

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